Rumsfeld made this promise to old Europe and, by god, we’re going to keep it.
President George Bush will announce tomorrow that the US military will pull up to 100,000 troops out of Europe and Asia in the biggest redeployment since the end of the Cold War.
The plan will see a number of US bases in Germany closed down, and troops returned home or redeployed to Eastern Europe.
The redeployment - first reported by The Observer in February last year in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq - will be presented by Bush as a logical response to the war on terrorism when he addresses the 2.6 million-member Veterans of Foreign Wars at its annual convention in Cincinnati.
In February last year, however, when the proposal was first mooted, Pentagon officials presented the closure of the bases in Germany as punishment for Germany's refusal to back the war in Iraq. [My italics]
According to the Post, two-thirds of the reduction will come from Europe, most of them Army soldiers in Germany, and most will be reassigned to bases in the US.
Officials said exact details of the moves have not been finalised, but some of the troops from Germany and South Korea will be moved to Nato expansion countries in Eastern Europe.
Good thing Western Europe isn’t an important trading partner or anything. Good thing South Korea isn’t close to any potential trouble spots. Good thing this administration never does anything dangerous and counterproductive for purely petty and spiteful reasons. Thank god we have a man of character like Bush in the White House. Good thing I’m a gentle and retiring soul or I might say something sarcastic.